Presque Isle Lights Returns for 2023 Holiday Season
Driving through a winter wonderland
WEEKENDS THROUGH DEC. 31
While you were at home preparing for your Thanksgiving traditions, the volunteers with Presque Isle Partnership and Penelec were working on setting up the fourth annual Presque Isle Lights display at Presque Isle State Park. The drive-through tour of seasonal lights and displays is open to the public weekend evenings throughout December. Since its inception in 2020, the event has grown bigger and brighter, with more displays being rolled out each year (including a Christmas Bigfoot making its debut in 2023).
When asked how the event has grown over the years, executive director of the Presque Isle Partnership Jon DeMarco said, "Penelec has been a critical partner as they installed secondary cable, transformers, and photo-cell outlets on approximately 30 utility poles that now power the snowflake ornaments and a few other groups of displays you see throughout the park. We've added color by bordering the windows of buildings and shelters. Since we started, we always said we would add a little more each year and that's exactly what we've been able to do."
Even though this is a free event that the whole family can enjoy, there is a suggested donation of five dollars, which can be made in the second bayside parking lot, where event programs are also available. Or stop in to Presque Isle Gallery and Gifts located in the Tom Ridge Environmental Center to donate or grab a program. DeMarco continues, "Donations are critical to partnership operations and bolster our ability to offer community events and take on future improvement projects." Along with helping out one of Erie's greatest assets, for each five dollar donation, you'll receive a keepsake button which, when registered, will enter you into a drawing for a $1,000 Country Fair gift card. There will also be hot cocoa available at the second bayside parking lot every Friday and Saturday of December, with all the lights turned on every weekend (with the exception of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day when the park will still be lit, but stations will not be open).
There is plenty to see so make sure you make the time to view it all. With the speed limit at the park being 25 mph, give yourself at least 40 minutes to take in all the festivities. When asked what displays were the crowd favorite, DeMarco explains "people get a kick out of the woodpeckers and especially the Presque Isle Lighthouse." Listen to some holiday music on Classy 99.9 while making the trek through this winter wonderland and remember that Presque Isle Lights is weather dependent. Event updates will be posted on Presque Isle Partnership's website (discoverpi.com) and their social media pages.
Friday, Dec. 1 through Sunday, Dec. 31 // Presque Isle State Park, 301 Peninsula Dr. // $5 suggested donation